Okay, I already can imagine the judgement that is going to come with this one; so, I figure I should address it upfront. (Though I could probably avoid some judgment by not posting about this, I would also be failing to acknowledge my awesome God's blessings; therefore, denying Him the glory He is due).
My family moved to this farm a year and a half ago. The house we came from had a pool, but the kids agreed having a farm was a good trade. Still, they wanted to save up their own money (no matter how long it took) to buy a pool. Through this past year and a half, my kids have been working hard on the farm to raise money for their pool fund. All the money they have gotten for the honey and bees wax products they have sold, as well as all the egg money that we have earned this year has gone into a special fund (before we even knew we were adopting again). The kids have also given ALL their birthday money and christmas money to the pool fund (after tithing a portion of it, of course ;) ). Even so, they did not have enough money for a pool this year.
We debated what to do. We had been dipping into the "pool fund" to pay for portions of the adoption, and then the kids asked about how much they had collected. They said they were willing to donate all of it to bringing their new siblings home; Dustin and I held it together to say we were proud of their generosity, but once they left the room, we cried. It may not seem like a lot, but can you imagine being a kid and sacrificing all your birthday presents and Christmas money for over a year, plus, giving any allowance you get (which our kids don't get any allowance; however, their farm chores help us to bring in money for honey, jam, & eggs)? I sure can't imagine being that selfless. I think I was a fairly generous kid, but not to that extent by any means.
Dustin and I started to pray about what to do. Obviously, we cannot afford a new pool (especially after dipping into the funds the kids had saved). While we were obviously proud of our children's generosity, we also felt guilty using all their money. We didn't feel it was right for us to just take all the money they had saved and worked so hard for.
Well, God blessed us yet again. We found a used pool on craigslist for a phenomenal price. It is a 24 ft above ground pool for $500! (They are normally about $5,000)! The people that owned it were looking to get rid of it, but they needed whoever bought it to take it down (and we would also have to put it back up). However, someone else was supposed to pick it up that day. We were disappointed, but we had a renewed hope that somehow we could still make something work out for our kids.
Then, the family that was supposed to get it didn't show up, and the lady selling it called us back to let us know it was still available. We were ecstatic! Shortly after, the original buyers called back and wanted to come get it, but the lady said that she just felt that we were the ones that should have it!
Praise the Lord. He blesses us in ways we never could have imagined. A huge pool for the kids this year, and the kids paid for the entire thing themselves and still gave over $1,000 to our adoption. WOO-HOO!!! His plan is even better than our own!
Have I told you how much I love my kids? How awesome they all are? I am so happy that God has blessed us in this way, that He has rewarded them for their diligence, hard work, and their generous hearts. I look forward to all 13 of our children enjoying time in the pool next summer!
I know there may be people that may question how we could be fundraising for an adoption but buying a pool. I would hope that you would not look down on us for this blessing. My kids have given up so much. They work harder than most kids that I know. Every day they have farm chores on top of household chores. They feed and water all the animals, butcher chickens, chase down the pigs when they escape (which is more often than you might think), they plant and weed gardens, gather and wash eggs, drag the fields, repair fences with dad, clean out the barn, harvest honey, help with firewood,..etc. They also help with all the "regular" chores of homes like cleaning, dishes, cooking, laundry,..etc (You didn't think I did all of this alone did you? ;) No way! Our kids are a huge part of our farm and our home. They make it work...I am more the overseer :) My kids don't have a lot of extra-curriculars outside of our farm, but they never complain about it. They are content kids, happy with what they have, and they make the best with what they have. None of them have a phone or even an iPod. We don't buy new clothes, we don't have new cars, we cut our own hair, we make our own laundry detergent,...we try to live as frugally as possible. This is a "splurge" that was only made possibly by God's blessing to our family as that pool is worth $4,500 more than what we are getting it for. They also threw in a winter cover and a brand new solar cover; plus, the owner is giving us the deck that goes with it! Praise God!
Sometimes, we don't understand things. I know I don't deserve the blessings in my life. But, God loves all His children; He blesses all of us in different ways, and none of us deserve any of it. However, rather than questioning it, I am just going to say, "THANK YOU LORD!"